Oral Chemotherapy Parity

Background

There are very few therapies available for brain tumor patients. One type of chemotherapy, temozolomide (Temodar) is a widely used treatment, and often the standard of care, for many patients with malignant brain tumors. Temozolomide is almost exclusively prescribed orally, and there are few (and sometime no) alternative therapies.

The Problem

The Solution

Congress should support oral chemotherapy parity legislation. The Cancer Drug Coverage Parity Act (HR 1801) and The Cancer Treatment Parity Act (S. 1879) are both supported by a bi-partisan group of co-sponsors, and would require health plans that cover chemotherapy to cover oral chemotherapy on an equal basis as chemotherapy given through hospital administered IV or injection.

Not only is access to oral chemotherapy critical to proper care, it can be beneficial to the patient’s quality of life because he or she can undergo treatment at home instead of traveling to a hospital.

Health insurance should facilitate brain tumor treatment, and not create a financial barrier to it.

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